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Women's World Cup: Bates century, Rowe five-fer help New Zealand thrash Pakistan by 71 runs

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Christchurch, March 26 (IANS) A scintillating century from opener Suzie Bates followed by a maiden five-wicket haul from Hannah Rowe helped New Zealand thrash Pakistan by 71 runs in their final league match of the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup at a packed Hagley Oval on Saturday.

Bates, while registering her 12th ODI century and fourth of the World Cup, also became the fourth women’s cricketer overall to reach 5,000 runs in the format as New Zealand made a challenging 265/8 in their 50 overs. In reply, Rowe’s career-best figures of 5/55 triggered a collapse of Pakistan’s batting order as they slumped from 155/3 to 194/9.

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With the win, New Zealand ended their league stage on a high. To have a miraculous chance of qualifying for the semi-finals, they would need South Africa to beat India and Bangladesh to beat England by huge margins and then sneak into the last four on the basis of net run rate. Meanwhile, Pakistan ended their World Cup campaign at the bottom of the points table with just a win over the West Indies to show.

New Zealand’s innings was all about Bates, who wowed the home crowd with a stunning display of leg-side excellence and kept the innings together. She also stitched half-century partnerships with Amelia Kerr (24), Maddy Green (23) and Brooke Halliday (29).

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In between, Bates had to rebuild the New Zealand innings as Nida Dar took out Kerr and Amy Satterthwaite in quick succession. She and Green had bided their time in a quiet yet important stand. But Nida Dar came in again to take out Green.

After reaching her century, Bates fell followed by Halliday and twin run-outs of Rowe and Jess Kerr. But the experience of Katey Martin (30 not out) helped New Zealand cross the 250-mark.

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In reply, Pakistan started well with Sidra Ameen and Muneeba Ali putting 39 runs in the first nine overs. But the duo got out in successive overs to leave Omaima Sohail and Bismah Maroof with the rebuilding job. When Sohail got out in the 20th over, Maroof (38) joined forces with Nida Dar (50) to build a stand of 82 runs for the fourth wicket.

Rowe’s reintroduction in the 35th over marked the start of her devastating spell. She had Maroof caught behind to end her partnership with Dar and then dismissed Aliya Riaz as well as Dar to send Pakistan into a meltdown from 155/3 to 158/6. From there, Pakistan’s resistance couldn’t stand up as the last few wickets fell tamely to give New Zealand a comfortable win.

Brief scores: New Zealand 265/8 in 50 overs (Suzie Bates 126, Katey Martin 30 not out; Nida Dar 3/39) beat Pakistan 194/9 in 50 overs (Nida Dar 50, Bismah Maroof 38; Hannah Rowe 5/55, Frankie Mackay 2/29) by 71 runs

–IANS

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